One day last month the guys at Surly threw open the doors to their brewery and let the unwashed masses (namely my buddies) buy six bottles each of this years batch of Darkness. Sadly I was not at the event but I hear it was a good time. Thankfully I've got friends. Good friends. Friends who give up bottles of this stuff because they are "good guys".
It pours smooth. Too thick to really believe you're pouring something water based. A little head, maybe 1/2 a finger of tan that fades back into the glass pretty quickly. Lots of lacing. The smell is unbeatable, smooth chocolate, a background hop smell and well.... darkness. You almost hear a wah wah and Barry White in the background and you start to wonder what your in for.
It tastes unbefreakingleavable. If chocolate milk were beer, and then the gods smiled upon it and then so did the devil for good measure, this is what it would taste like. Upfront you taste chocolate, and a huge sweetness that I wasn't ready for in something billed as a Russian Imperial Stout. No boozy overtones at all maybe some dark fruit, figs and raisins. Mostly you get the sweetness and the smoothness. Then you feel a little carbonation on your tongue, not too much, just a touch to show you it's not a one trick pony. Then you realize how thick it is... your mouth is coated, you can feel it in the back of your throat.... Quite a complex taste, well balanced, but with a definite emphasis (to my taste buds at least) on the sweeter side of things. A dessert beer if ever there was one.
Surly does a pretty good job with everything I've had from them but they really hit this one out of the park. Hats off to Omar and the gang, keep it up.